United States District Court, S.D. New York
OPINION AND ORDER
PITMAN United States Magistrate Judge.
to resolve a dispute among the parties concerning
plaintiff's objections and responses to 59 of the
requests for admissions ("RFAs") served by
defendants. Defendants claim that the responses are
inadequate and seek an Order either directing plaintiff to
serve amended responses or deeming the requests admitted
(Defs.' Letter to the Undersigned, dated June 20, 2017
(Docket Item ("D.I.") 101 ("Defs.'
Motion")). Plaintiff argues that these RFAs themselves
are improper and that, in any event, his responses comply
with plaintiff's obligations under Fed.R.Civ.P. 36
(Pl.'s Letter to the Undersigned, dated June 22, 2017
(D.I. 104) ("Pl.'s Opp.")).
an employment discrimination lawsuit in which plaintiff, a
former police officer with the New York City Police
Department ("NYPD"), alleges that he was subjected
to a hostile work environment and constructively discharged
on the basis of his religion. Defendants have served 59 RFAs
on plaintiff that primarily relate to NYPD policies and
statements plaintiff allegedly made to other officers during
his tenure at the NYPD.
Requests for Admission under Fed.R.Civ.P. 36
Rule of Civil Procedure 36(a) provides:
[a] party may serve on any other party a written request to
admit, for purposes of the pending action only, the truth of
any matters within the scope of Rule 26 (b) (1) relating to:
(A) facts, the application of law to fact, or opinions about
(B) the genuineness of any described documents.
procedure is designed to promote the narrowing of issues for
trial, and can be a significant aid to the court as well as
the parties in ensuring a shorter and more focu[s]ed
trial." Sequa Corp. v. Gelmin, 91 Civ. 8675
(CSH), 1993 WL 350029 at *1 (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 7, 1993)
(Dolinger, M.J.). In setting forth the scope of an
"Answer, " the rule provides:
[i]f a matter is not admitted, the answer must specifically
deny it or state in detail why the answering party cannot
truthfully admit or deny it. A denial must fairly respond to
the substance of the matter; and when good faith requires
that a party qualify an answer or deny only a part of a
matter, the answer must specify the part admitted and qualify
or deny the rest. The answering party may assert lack of
knowledge or information as a reason for failing to admit or
deny only if the party states that it has made reasonable
inquiry and that the information it knows or can readily
obtain is insufficient to enable it to admit or deny.
36(a)(4). If the court finds that "an answer does not
comply with this rule, the court may order either that the
matter is admitted or that an amended answer be served."
purposes of this Opinion, the RFA responses and/or objections
that defendants are challenging can be divided into five